Primerica

Posts Tagged ‘savings’

Nov

19.15

pri-blog_thanksgiving art

Tis the season for parties and giving, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend too much money along the way. There are plenty of ways to celebrate the occasion without breaking the bank. Here are five:

  1. Decorate with nature. Hosting a get together or simply want to spruce up your home? Look outside. There are plenty of decorative fall finds in your backyard! Gather pinecones and put them in a bowl as a centerpiece. Use the beautifully colored fall leaves as place cards or to spread along your tablescape. Acorns littering your yard? Dip them in gold paint (a couple of dollars at any craft store) and add them to your festive scene.
  1. Make it potluck. Instead of hosting a dinner party and preparing everything yourself, ask guests to bring a dish to contribute. Not only will it make it a more memorable “sharing” event, it will save you time and money!
  1. Go to a farmer’s market. Looking to save money on fall vegetables? Go to your local farmer’s market to stock up. You can’t beat the variety — or the price!
  1. Make a list and check it twice! A great way to save money is to jot down what you need on a piece of paper or your handheld device and stick to it when you’re shopping. Try not to deviate from your plan and get caught up in buying “extras” you really don’t need.
  1. Keep it simple. Thanksgiving is all about spending time with people you care about and showing them how much you appreciate them, not over-doing it. Keep it simple and you’ll be thankful you did!

15PFS536


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Nov

13.15

10-ways-to-save-this-fall

10 Ways to Save This Fall
Holiday events, gifts and grand meals are just around the corner! Unfortunately for most, that means overindulging and overspending become the norm. It’s fun while it lasts, but who wants to live with that kind of regret? Not you!

There are tons of super fun things you can do, make and see that won’t break the bank. So this season, don’t “fall” into bad habits, “fall” into savings, instead. You’ll be glad you did!

10 Fun (and Easy!) Ways to Save

  1. Cook hearty meals. Fall is all about feeling cozy, so break out those comfort food and soup recipes! You can cook in batches and freeze them for convenience. Plus, cooking in a larger quantity (i.e. for 6-8 instead of 3-4 servings) saves you time, too. Want to up the ante? Use your handy crockpot instead of the oven for energy efficiency savings, too!
  2. Enjoy the great outdoors. It’s not too hot and not too cold. That means it’s the perfect time to get out and explore! Most parks are free, so lace up your sneakers or hiking boots and make exploring nature a family affair. Another way to make it special and save? Pack a picnic and eat al fresco!
  3. Take advantage of special sales. Stores and shopping sites are ramping up for the holiday season. Make a list of what you need to buy and keep a lookout for the best price. Sales aren’t just on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Stores will be having sales weekly (if not daily!) for the rest of the year.
  4. Make some gifts. With so many online resources, it’s easy to find simple, affordable and adorable handmade gift ideas for the ones you love. Get a head start on making gifts now so you don’t feel overwhelmed later.
  5. Adjust your thermostat. Fall is a perfect time to turn off the AC and open a few windows. Also, if it gets chilly, simply light a fire in the fireplace or add a sweater to your outfit. These are easy ways to save money on your heating bill.
  6. Light a fire. Fun is about being together, not fancy outings. Have a fire pit and a backyard? It’s a great time of year to roast marshmallows or hot dogs and make s’mores. Kids love simple luxuries like that and it’s relaxing for adults to sit back and gather around the fire. Plus, you can find affordable fire pits at your local hardware store for as little as $30.
  7. Weatherproof your home. Simple things like weather stripping, adding extra caulk and changing the direction of your fans to push warm air down can cut down on expenses in the winter.
  8. Get out of dodge. Airfares and other modes of transportation are cheaper in the fall and winter months. Treat yourself to a getaway and you could save!
  9. Put your gym membership on hold. The weather is nice outside, so why pay to exercise indoors? Ask your gym if you can suspend your membership for a couple of months and save!
  10. Look for free stuff. Tis the season for all kinds of fun outdoor activities and mini celebrations. Check your local paper and local discount websites to see what’s happening in your area for free (hello, lighting of the Christmas tree!) or for a reduced price.

Remember, you can still have fun this fall and save along the way. Just be creative and look around you. Savings are everywhere!

15PFS528


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Dec

13.12

500-or-less

A recent survey revealed this shocking fact: 40% of Americans have $500 or less in savings. If an emergency were to happen – like a broken washing machine or flat tires – nearly half of the adults in America would be hard-pressed to cover those costs. And that 40% includes people with large 401(k)s and big houses, too!

Looking to change your financial situation? Building an emergency savings is crucial to protecting your family against everyday mishaps – and is a first step in building wealth.

*philadelpha.cbslocal.com, October 19, 2012


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Nov

27.12

We asked our Facebook fans to give us their best tip for holiday shopping, and they delivered. Small changes can lead to big savings, and they had great ideas on how to shop smart during the holidays. We compiled some of the best advice to create these five easy steps to becoming a super shopper!

Step 1: Figure out how much money total you can spend on gifts.
Instead of deciding on the amount you’ll spend on each person of your gift list, start by figuring out exactly how much you can spend on all of your gifts. Be realistic about what you can actually afford.

One person suggested saving all of your loose change during the year and adding it to your gift budget at the end of the year. Chances are high that you’ll save more than you’d expect!

Step 2: Make a list of everyone you need to buy a gift for.
Once you know how much you can spend, make a list of everyone you need to buy a gift for this year. Our smart shoppers noted that going into stores without a plan is often what gets people off budget. Having a list in hand while on the hunt for presents can help you focus and stay on target.

Step 3: Budget what you are going to spend for each person.
Go back to your original budget – the total amount you could spend on everyone – and now decide what you’re going to spend on each person on your list.

You don’t have to stick to this exactly, but it helps guide your spending. For example, you might budget $30 for Grandma. If you find the perfect gift for her and it happens to be on sale, then count that as a shopping success! You got her a great gift, and you saved money. You don’t have to spend exactly what you budgeted – just make sure you don’t spend more.

Step 4: Total it all up and make sure you’re within your limit.
Along the way, keep a running total so that you can be sure you’re within your limit. Don’t wait until the last minute! Keep track as you shop so that you can make any necessary adjustments along the way.

Step 5: If you can’t afford it, you shouldn’t be buying it. Get creative and come up with something else!
The most common advice – don’t buy it if you can’t afford it. You don’t want to dig yourself into debt trying to buy gifts for the holidays. It’s truly the thought that counts, and some of the most meaningful gifts won’t cost you anything but time.

For example, want to treat your mom to something nice but don’t have the money? Give her the gift of your time and hard work – write her a note that lets her know that you’ll clean her house from top to bottom.

That’s just one example, but there are numerous ways you can shower someone with love without spending a dime.

What’s your best holiday shopping advice? Share in the comments!


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Oct

09.12

Getting motivated to save can sometimes be tough. Here are some “sneaky” ways to help you reach your goals:

  1. Label your accounts. Did you know that people who assign specific goals to savings accounts put away 31% more than people who don’t?1 It’s true!
  2. Use photos to stay motivated. Got something specific in mind? Try using a picture of what – or who — you’re saving for to keep your eye on the prize. Keep it on your computer or in your wallet – wherever it will be most useful in the battle against impulse buying.
  3. Hang out with frugal friends. Spend time around people who are trying to save money, and some of their attitudes and ideas are bound to rub off on you. Conversely, limit time spent with big spenders.
  4. Autopilot your savings. Make saving automatic by setting up regular balance transfers to your savings account. When your money doesn’t appear in your account, you are less likely to spend it.
  5. Organize your goals. People who set fewer but connected goals save nearly five times as much as those who have many disconnected goals.2 For example, you might focus on three goals – saving for retirement, college fund for the kids and an emergency fund – and create a theme to integrate them like “improving my family finances.”
  1. “101 Ways to Build Wealth,” Money, July 2012
  2. Ibid


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